Draft calendar operation

This site is a first attempt at providing an event calendar for environmental/ecological organisations in the greater Christchurch area. Nothing about it is “set in concrete” and I (Dave Evans) welcome suggestions for improvements. If the site is seen to be useful, then one of the first things that needs to be decided is a name for the site and a domain name could follow from that. Options could be proposed and a Doodle poll held to help decide.

The Events menu entry in the top right corner takes you to the full calendar. The right sidebar of the other pages features the most imminent events. Each event in the calendar and the sidebar is a link to a page for the event that has more detail on it. Some events have an associated image to create a bit of colour. The events in the calendar were mostly imported from, courtesy of Sonny Whitelaw, or uploaded from the Trees for Canterbury Facebook page. I added a couple of Travis Wetland Trust events to test the processes.

The home page is a blog that could be used to feature events, or pass on information not related to any particular event. An RSS feed could be used to alert people to upcoming events. I started on a page linking to associated groups, but you’ll see that I didn’t get very far. Pages for other purposes could be added – this is a WordPress-based site.

I can envisage a number of ways to get events into the calendar. Importing events from a Facebook page is one of the easiest and all I have to do is tell the Event Aggregator software the URL of the page. Importing from Google calendars is similar. Events can also be imported from an ICS file, a widely used calendar format. I got the events from Braid by exporting events from its calendar to an ICS file and then importing them into this site’s calendar – a couple of minutes work. I have also made a Google form where event details may be entered, but this is still a work in progress. They go from there to a spreadsheet, from where I can easily import the events into the event calendar. Some imports can be done automatically on a regular basis.

Hosting and domain name registration would be about $150 pa and the Event Aggregator plugin for automated event imports costs $130 pa.

Comments and questions are welcomed.


8 replies on “Draft calendar operation”

Hi Dave
Will the event plugin cover all those wish to be “hooked in” or will every organisation have to pay plugin fee? and will this be annual or one off? Sorry, I am a bit ignorant about how these things work.
Diana Shand

There is just one fee for the site. In theory it could be paid just once, but over time there will be updates to the plugin and ideally the fee would be paid annually to keep it up to date.

2. Nothing on the Cor Vink talk told me this was a Forest and Bird talk or where it would be. Colleen was talking about organisations having the ability to put their logos on their talk…perhaps this would take too much room, but at least their name should be there, and location, and what about a contact email address

If you click on the event in the calendar to go to the full listing of the event and then scroll down you’ll see that the organizer is F&B and all the other details you asked about. An image can be attached to the event and that could be the F&B logo.

1. on home page I was looking round for the calendar itself….found it under events…so why not replace events with calendar in the top right hand corner?

I have done that. The URL is still and if I change that too the link in the survey email under discussion will need to be corrected.

Sorry dave, had trouble getting these messages out as one. My screen whisked off the side and when I went to repeat the lost message it told me I was duplicating. I started the message by saying how valuable the whole calendar was going to be, and many thanks for all your great work.

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